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  1. Really pleased you did an episode on this, guys! I liked the way you laid it out too, from both the point of view of surfers and hosts. I would add a couple of points regarding the request system:

    *As a surfer, use the host’s name in your message and mention in it why you want to meet/stay with that person in particular (i.e. don’t copy and paste requests)
    *As a host, if you receive a couch request in which the surfer hasn’t used your name and/or has obviously just copied and pasted the message, don’t accept them; reply with something like “please read my profile, then send a request”. This way, people who are taking advantage of (and misusing) the system just to get free accommodation will be weeded out.

  2. Another awesome thing about couch surfing is lots of cities have active couch surfing groups that organise meet ups and activities. For example the Oxford group meets every Tuesday evening in a different pub and often there are other things happening during the week and weekend.
    When you have just moved to a new city this is an awesome way to make friends and find out about what there is to do in the city.

  3. Good advice all around. I might add that it’s important to be flexible, both as a surfer and a host.

    I get 5-10 couch requests a day, and I say yes to most of them as long as the person has a filled out profile with photo and references. But arrival and departure dates are always fluid for travelers.

    As a host, I understand that it’s not always possible to let people know what’s happening, say if your bus is cancelled or breaks down in the middle of no where and you don’t have a phone or internet access.

    And as a surfer, giving your host as much information as possible (I’m taking this bus at this time) and then following up when you can works very well.

  4. Great additional advice Kellie and Leigh. There’s just so much going on in the couchsurfing community it was impossible to fit it all into one podcast – we really appreciate the additional tips.

  5. Very good article. Couchsurfing is just such an incredible way of getting to know and experience the more local side of travel. I think that one of the most important things to do is to adapt (out of respect) to the person you are staying with.

    Just as an example: if your host doesn’t drink (and you do), consider taking a break and adapting to the person who is hosting you. It just makes everyone a little more comfortable.